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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Masterful fairytale twister
Pullman at his best - simple, but with layer upon layer of depth. I have to say, with some embarassment, that I did not spot the "nature of the beast" until almost the very last page. I cannot bring myself to say what it was, either, because I enjoyed the surprise so much that I want others to read it and have that experience. All this is far from saying that the rest...
Published on 19 May 2004 by Amazon Customer

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3.0 out of 5 stars The meaning of belonging
A book about belonging, difference and unconditional love (and attachment). Our hero has realistic difficulties in understanding the differences between rat and human behaviour (the rat is of course always part of him and near the surface), and a lot of the human behaviour he encounters is much below the standards expected by rats. Our Hero takes a positive decision to...
Published 14 days ago by Fran Todd


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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Masterful fairytale twister, 19 May 2004
By 
Pullman at his best - simple, but with layer upon layer of depth. I have to say, with some embarassment, that I did not spot the "nature of the beast" until almost the very last page. I cannot bring myself to say what it was, either, because I enjoyed the surprise so much that I want others to read it and have that experience. All this is far from saying that the rest of the book was anything but a joy to read, with unexpected action leaping from each page.
As always, Pullman turns the world as you know it on its head - to a world that's, in many ways, more real than our own.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars i was a rat by george chandler, 18 Feb. 2013
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I was a rat

My dad bought me this book for me, recommended by my English tutor who encourages me to read books for better descriptive writing and vocab. When the book first arrived, I looked at the front cover and it looked like a boring book, but as they say "never judge a book by its cover".

"I was a rat" is a story of a boy who claims he used to be a rat. We also meet an eccentric Mr Tapscrew, along with the beautiful princess who has some secrets that are untold but could be revealed later in the book.

The pictures are quite amusing and detailed as well as the headlines about the rat boy and the bias ballots on the headline. He is always up to extreme mischief and hangs around bad influences. With him in the story it makes the whole book an adventure.

Overall, I think this is a great story to read by Philip Pullman and it's a good book to bury your head in it and forget about current thoughts.

Reviewed By George Chandler
age 12
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This book is enthralling., 3 Nov. 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: I Was a Rat! (Paperback)
This book is great, I had expected it to be a bit young for me from the cover. But as they say "don't judge a book by its cover" so i didn't. I picked a copy up from the library along with the book tape and sat down to read along with the tape.
The book is all about a little boy in a page boys uniform who knocks on Bob and Joans door. They take him in and all he can tell them about where he comes from is "I was a rat." They take him everywhere: to the police, to the hospital and then to school.
The funniest part is when he is in school and the teacher says "get out your pencils and we shall do some arithmetic" the little boy (who Bob and Joan name Roger!) has already learnt the word pencil, and as he was a rat before he likes to eat them. So he says to himself "I've just learnt a new word! Arithmetic means a snack"
I really recommend you read this amusing book and I hope it brings a smile to your face (whether young or old) like it did to mine.
Thankyou Phillip Pullman for writing this book
Keep writing more.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A book for all ages, 27 May 2008
By 
J. C. W. Collins (Medway, Kent, Great Britain) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This is the second time that I've read this masterpiece now. I was originally introduced to it by a TV serialisation of the book that I watched some years ago.
It is a story about a rat who is turned into a page-boy, for the purpose of a Royal Ball, but who doesn't get turned back into a rat. After the Royal Ball is over our page-boy ends up wandering the streets and is taken in by a kindly old married couple. Who with great love and patience try to teach him how to behave like a good little boy and not like a rodent.
However, our page-boy gets himself into all kinds of scrapes and this makes for a great story. He finds himself at the mercy of the unscupulous Mr Tapscrew, so-called experts and the populist newspaper The Daily Scourge.
This novel is obviously set in times gone by but somehow manages to mirror our modern society. It also deals with human nature, both good and bad, in an excellent manner.
I recommend this book not only to children but to adults too. I thoroughly enjoyed it and I'm 45!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A terrific romp for younger readers, 22 April 2003
By 
purplepadma (London) - See all my reviews
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A highly amusing tale for younger readers which allows Philip Pullman to indulge his love of the seamy side of Victorian life ('You want 'em nauseated,' as the side-show owner's wife explains). Roger the rat boy lurches from bad to worse as he is taken advantage of by a Philosopher Royal, an unscrupulous freak-show manager and a youthful gang leader who leads Roger into crime under threat of the Sterminator. Will kindly Bob and Joan be able to rescue Roger from a terrible fate and give him a life of love and bread and milk?
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18 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another stunning contribution to children's fiction..., 4 Sept. 2000
By A Customer
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I'm not joking - if you've ever read any of Pullman's longer works (The Subtle Knife or The Ruby In The Smoke, anyone?) then you may well be securely thinking you've already experienced Pullman at his best. And yet these smaller books are of equal worth to his other works, and in some cases there are distinct advantages. 'I Was A Rat' goes beautifully alongside 'Clockwork' or 'The Firework Makers Daughter'; all of them wonderfully crafted tales with traditional and modern elements perfectly blended, with tremendous wit and playful use of vocabulary, all of it designed to draw the reader into the book's imaginary world, which it does so well. You know, I can't believe you're still reading this - for goodness sake buy it!
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3.0 out of 5 stars The meaning of belonging, 12 Feb. 2015
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A book about belonging, difference and unconditional love (and attachment). Our hero has realistic difficulties in understanding the differences between rat and human behaviour (the rat is of course always part of him and near the surface), and a lot of the human behaviour he encounters is much below the standards expected by rats. Our Hero takes a positive decision to engage with humanity and the love offered. - with help. I would put this at the 10 age group, and be aware if your child has issues around attachment and difference.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Pencil Chewer, 10 Dec. 2014
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M. J. Saxton (Dewsbury, West Yorkshire United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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I loved this take on the unexpected consequences of the Cinderella story. Roger is a great little character who just need looking after. Bob and Joan are the ideal fairytale old couple, but it seems even in fantasy world you have to deal with red-tape and they can't just take him on. School doesn't know how to cope with him and soon he is on the run.

For children this is a nice story with some nasty and scary bits and a happy ending. Adults will see the criticism of the way things work in this world of ours.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Deeply Affecting, 30 Oct. 2000
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Mrs. K. A. Wheatley "katywheatley" (Leicester, UK) - See all my reviews
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A great twist on a conventional fairy story. I didn't work it out until almost the end and was tickled pink! Otherwise it is a very touching story and my heart bled for little Roger and all his trials and tribulations. A terrific book.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A hilarious version of a well known fairtytale!, 21 July 2014
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I read this with my Year 4 children and they absolutely loved it! A great storyline with both
challenging and interesting vocabulary. A book that is equally enjoyable to adults, as well as children.
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